Learn about water-related issues and initiatives in Larimer County

Join Larimer County and the Colorado Water Center for monthly sessions (August to November, 2023) designed to engage community members with information and insight about relevant water-related issues and initiatives in the region. Each session will include a Water 101 introduction, presentations from regional water experts, audience Q/A, and panel discussion. 

For detailed session agendas, speaker bios, livestreaming links, and post-session video recordings, visit Larimer County’s Water Education Series webpage.

Schedule Overview

Session 1: Water Supply and Risks

August 21, 2023, 6:00 – 8:00 pm
Larimer County Admin Services Building – Hearing Room (1st Floor)
200 W. Oak Street, Fort Collins, CO, 80522
Note: This session will also be available for livestreaming.

Session Overview:

  • Introduction and Water 101
  • Larimer County Regional Water Existing Conditions Report
  • Integrated Water and Land Use Planning
  • Colorado River Water Supply and Climate Change
  • Fires, Flood Risk, and Water Quality
  • Open Discussion / Q&A

Session 2: Water Conservation & Sharing

September 20, 2023, 6:00 – 8:00 pm
Larimer County Loveland Campus – Big Thompson River Room
200 Peridot Ave, Loveland, CO 80537

Session Overview:

  • Introduction and Water 101
  • Overview of Agriculture and Water Use
  • Agricultural Water Efficiencies & Conservation
  • Water Sharing Between Agriculture and Municipalities
  • Urban Water Use & Conservation
  • Open Discussion / Q&A

Session 3: Watershed Health and Instream Flows

October 18, 2023, 6:00 – 8:00 pm
Larimer County Loveland Campus – Big Thompson River Room, 200
Peridot Ave, Loveland, CO 80537

Session Overview:

  • Introduction and Water 101
  • Colorado Instream Flows
  • Environmental Flow Projects on the Poudre River
  • Restoration Efforts Along the Poudre River
  • Big Thompson Watershed Health
  • Open Discussion / Q&A

Session 4: What’s Next for Larimer County Water

November 16, 2023, 6:00 – 8:00 pm
Larimer County Admin Services Building – Hearing Room (1st Floor)
200 W. Oak Street, Fort Collins, CO, 80522
Note: This session will also be available for livestreaming.

Session Overview:

  • Larimer County Short- and Long-Term Water Plans
  • Larimer County Flood Planning Efforts
  • Northern Colorado Water Alliance
  • Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion in Water
  • Resources and Opportunities for Public Engagement
  • Open Discussion / Q&A

Missed Session 1? Watch the entire session or choose from a selection of video clips from featured speakers. 

Missed Session 2? Watch the entire session or choose from a selection of video clips from featured speakers. 

Missed Session 3? Watch the session here

Speaker Info

Dr. Tracy serves as Director of the Colorado Water Center at Colorado State University. He has led program initiatives on understanding and developing sustainable water resource management practices in a number of basins across the western United States, including the western High Plains, Northern Plains, Great Basin and Pacific Northwest hydro-climatological regions.  As Director of the Colorado Water Center, he works with private, state, regional and federal entities in the development of programs that more effectively support achieving their water and environmental resource management objectives.

Lesli Ellis currently serves as Larimer County’s Community Planning, Infrastructure, and Resources Director and is leading the Water Master Plan project. She has three decades of experience working for and consulting with over 40 communities around the U.S. on long range plans and policies, codes, infrastructure projects, and open lands programs. Lesli received a Master of Urban Planning and a Master of Landscape Architecture from the University of Washington in Seattle and a Bachelor of Environmental Design from the University of Colorado in Boulder.

Lindsay Rogers is a Water Policy Analyst at Western Resource Advocates where she advances water conservation at the municipal level to bolster water security and protect Western rivers. She facilitates local and state policy development and advises on projects to implement water-saving strategies, including graywater ordinances, waterwise landscaping programs, and integrated water and land-use planning in the West.

Bradley H. Udall is a Senior Water and Climate Research Scientist / Scholar at Colorado State University’s Colorado Water Center. His expertise includes hydrology and related policy issues of the American West, with a focus on the Colorado River. Brad was a co-author of the 2009 and 2018 National Climate Assessments and a contributing author to the 2014 Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change 5th Assessment. Brad has testified in both the U.S. Senate and U.S. House of Representatives on the impacts of climate change of water resources and provided input to multiple National Academy of Science panels. He has published multi peer-reviewed journal articles on the causes of the declining Colorado River flows and on the ongoing aridification of the Western US.

Esther Vincent is a professional engineer and the Director of Environmental Services at Northern Water, where she has worked since 1999. She oversees Northern Water’s water quality, water efficiency and flow monitoring programs, environmental compliance and environmental data management systems. She has served on the boards of the Grand County Water Information Network, the Big Thompson Watershed Forum and the Colorado WaterWise Council, and is an alumna of the WEco Water Leaders program.

Jennifer Gimbel is a Senior Water Policy Scholar and former Interim Director at the Colorado Water Center.  Jennifer has experience in law and policy on national, interstate, and state water issues. Jennifer was the Director of the Colorado Water Conservation Board, the water policy agency for Colorado. As a water lawyer, she worked for the Attorney General’s Offices in Wyoming and Colorado.

Josh Boissevain recently joined the Colorado Water Trust as its staff attorney. Previously, Josh worked as a water lawyer at a small firm for three years where his clients included primarily municipalities, but also ranchers, farmers, and landowners. He also clerked for the Honorable James F. Hartmann in Colorado’s Division 1 water court. Josh served in the Peace Corps in the Republic of Moldova.

Eric Potyondy works in the Fort Collins City Attorney’s Office as the City’s water attorney. Eric has been practicing water law in Colorado since graduating from the University of Colorado Law School in 2006. After clerking for the Water Judge in Greeley for two years, Eric practiced at a small water law firm for six years before returning to his hometown to work as the in-house water attorney for the City of Fort Collins. Eric now lives in Fort Collins with his wife, two boys, one old cat, and a small herd of bikes.

Hally Strevey is the Executive Director of the Coalition for the Poudre River Watershed, where she has worked since 2015. Hally has a diverse background in both wildlife and ecology, with a Bachelor of Science in wildlife biology from Colorado State University and a Master of Science in restoration ecology from Montana State University. She is a Fort Collins, Colorado local, with a great love of the West. She spent much of her childhood fishing, hiking, and cross-country skiing in the Poudre River watershed, which helped to fuel her passion for a career path in restoration ecology and watershed management. 

Laura Quattrini is the Director of the Big Thompson Watershed Coalition, bringing 20 years of experience working for conservation non-profits and an educational background in Wildlife Biology. Over her career, she focused on applying science to natural resource management and engaging in collaborative conservation efforts with a wide range of stakeholders, partners, and landowners. Through this work, she has become deeply embedded in many conservation initiatives in Colorado and acutely familiar with the watershed and forestry issues facing western communities. Since starting with Big Thompson Watershed Coalition in early 2022 she has been growing the BTWC team to help build community capacities that work towards a more resilient watershed and landscape through forest health management, stream and river restoration, and Cameron Peak Fire recovery.

Karen Schlatter is the Associate Director of the Colorado Water Center at Colorado State University. She leads the development and implementation of the Center’s outreach and engagement strategy and specializes in stakeholder engagement and watershed planning and management. Karen previously worked at the University of Florida Water Institute to improve water management in Florida through projects related to climate change, agricultural management practices, and freshwater systems. She also worked at the Sonoran Institute for a decade, leading landscape-scale restoration of the Colorado River Delta in Mexico.

Mariel Miller is the Water Conservation Manager for the City of Fort Collins Utilities. Mariel works collaboratively across City departments and in partnerships with community members and organizations to advance effective, equitable, and forward-looking approaches to water demand management through efficiency programs, plans and policies. Her background includes over 15 years of work in local government where she has served in complimentary roles as a land use planner, sustainability coordinator and public works director.

Greg Peterson is the Executive Director of the Colorado Ag Water Alliance, which is comprised of agricultural leaders from across Colorado committed to the preservation of agriculture through the wise use of Colorado’s water resources. Greg received a Masters in Political Economy of Resources from The Colorado School of Mines and worked as a teacher previously.

Joel Schneekloth is the Water Resources Extension Specialist at the Colorado Water Center. He is responsible for the development of research and demonstration projects relating to water quantity and quality issues that are attributable to agriculture and urban water use and helps to develop educational programming to help magnify these water issues to the public. Joel specializes in drought education and mitigation, irrigation management, and alternative cropping systems. Healso collaborates with Nebraska and Kansas on regional water issues.

Brett Bovee is the President of WestWater Research based in the Fort Collins office. Brett brings close to 20 years of experience conducting a variety of engineering, economic, and water rights studies across the Western states. He assists clients in buying water rights, valuing water, evaluating water supply risk, and planning for future water challenges. Brett brings a unique perspective to projects, combining a background in water resources engineering with a developed knowledge of water rights and economics.

Laurie Marie Kadrich is the Assistant County Manager of Larimer County. She previously served as the Larimer County Director of Community, Planning, Infrastructure, and Resources from 2019-2022. She  has decades of service in local government leadership positions at municipal and county levels in both Wyoming and Colorado and a master’s degree in public administration.  

John Hunt is the National Practice Leader – Hydraulics at Ayres Associates Inc and a Larimer County Flood Review Board Member. He has more than 30 years of experience in water resources engineering,  and manages Ayres’ river engineering discipline and projects in bridge hydraulics, scour analysis, culvert design, and roadway drainage. He has been responsible for the hydraulics, scour, and countermeasure studies for hundreds of bridges in 15 states and overseas.

Cecil Gutierrez served on the Loveland City Council for ten years, 2007 to 2017, eight of those were as Mayor. A graduate of Western State College, Cecil also received a master’s degree at Colorado State University.  In 1999, Cecil retired from a career as a high school band director at Loveland High School.  He currently serves on the Executive Board of the Community Foundation of Northern Colorado, Colorado Transportation Investment Office Board of Directors, and the Board of Trustees of Western Colorado University.

Claire Bouchard is the Director of Community Engagement and Communications for the Community Foundation of Northern Colorado. In her role, she convenes regional leaders around community issues including water, disasters, workforce, and community growth. She has lived and worked in Larimer County for nearly 20 years.

Jessica Thrasher is the Diversity, Equity, Inclusion (DEI) Programs Leader at the Colorado Water Center. She focuses on creating and managing programs that promote a diverse water workforce that represents the communities served, equitable access to water resources and information, and developing resources that promote integration of DEI practices into the water field. She is dedicated to fostering collaboration, innovation, and inclusion of diverse perspectives to build an equitable, sustainable water future for all. 

Fishing the Poudre River

Accessibility Info

Larimer County and Colorado State University are committed to creating an inclusive and accessible environment. If you need a reasonable accommodation, please contact publicaffairs@larimer.org or 970-498-7015. If you need an interpreter for this program, please get in touch with publicaffairs@larimer.org or call 970-498-7007. Please make all requests no later than one week prior to the event. We will do our best to accommodate late requests but cannot guarantee they will be met.